Over the past week or so, the first reading for daily Mass has been from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Ephesians. Today’s is a familiar one for many of us, but one worth hearing again:
Brothers and sisters:
I kneel before the Father,
from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named,
that he may grant you in accord with the riches of his glory
to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inner self,
and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith;
that you, rooted and grounded in love,
may have strength to comprehend with all the holy ones
what is the breadth and length and height and depth,
and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge,
so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Now to him who is able to accomplish far more than all we ask or imagine,
by the power at work within us,
to him be glory in the Church and in Christ Jesus
to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Eph 3:14-21)
This reading ties in aptly to my holy hour last night. As I was leaving the house, I grabbed my copy of St. Faustina’s diary, Divine Mercy in My Soul, which I don’t often do because there has been one in the adoration chapel, but of late it has been missing. As I was getting out of the car, the rather random thought came to my mind, “417.” I thought, “Ok…so I guess I’ll read entry 417 and see what the Lord has in store for me.”
[April] 26. On Friday, when I was at Ostra Brama to attend the ceremony during which the image was displayed, I heard a sermon given by my confessor [Father Sopocko]. This sermon about divine Mercy was the first of the things that Jesus had asked for so very long ago. When he began to speak about the great mercy of the Lord, the image came alive and the rays pieced the hearts of the people gathered there, but not all to the same degree. Some received more, some less. Great joy filled my soul to see the grace of God.
(174) Then I heard the words, You are a witness of My mercy. You shall stand before My throne forever as a living witness to My mercy.
When the sermon was over, I did not wait for the end of the service, as I was in a hurry to get back home. When I had taken a few steps, a great multitude of demons blocked my way. They threatened me with terrible tortures, and voices could be heard: “She has snatched away everything we have worked for over so many years!” When I asked them, “Where have you come from in such great numbers?” the wicked forms answered, “Out of human hearts; stop tormenting us!”
Seeing their great hatred for me, I immediately asked my Guardian Angel for help, and at once the bright and radiant figure of my Guardian Angel appeared and said to me, “Do not fear, spouse of my Lord; without His permission these spirits will do you no harm.” Immediately the evil spirits vanished, and the faithful Guardian Angel accompanied me, in a visible manner, right to the very house. His look was modest and peaceful, and a flame of fire sparkled from his forehead.
O Jesus, I would like to toil and wear myself out and suffer all my life for that one moment in which I saw Your glory, O lord, and profit for souls. (Divine Mercy in My Soul, 417-419; Jesus’ words in bold.)
A few things grabbed me:
- St. Faustina would like to toil and wear herself out and suffer all her life for that one moment in which she saw the Lord. What an amazing moment that must have been. I cannot fathom it. St. Paul speaks to me, as he speaks to the Ephesians, for I cannot comprehend the breadth, depth, and height of the love that God has for me; indeed for each of us.
- The power of Divine Mercy in our souls drives out demons and evil from our hearts. How important it is to keep the thought and prayer of Divine Mercy in the forefront of our minds and hearts in order to fight the enemy.
- The prompt and immediate response of our guardian angels to the request for assistance. When accosted, St. Faustina immediately asked her Guardian Angel for help, and “at once the bright and radiant figure” of her Guardian Angel appeared and the evil spirits vanished. Her Guardian Angel continued to guard her until she returned to the house. This is once again a reminder to me to call on my guardian angel. My guardian angel is equally at the ready, but I go in and out of being mindful of him. I need to double down with my guardian angel, as I have been so frequently reminded in the last year. Oh…just to be mindful! (I think the flame of fire sparkling from his forehead is pretty cool, too!)
So today, embrace anew the gift of the love of God in His Divine Mercy and the gift of your guardian angel, that you “may have strength to comprehend with all the holy ones what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ.”
Saint Faustina, pray for us! Anne